The deadline is this week for farmers and ranchers to apply for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). Producers who faced price declines and additional marketing costs due to the coronavirus pandemic and are interested in applying to receive direct payment relief need to do so by Friday, Sept. 11.
According to VSCNews, more than 160 commodities are eligible for CFAP. These include certain non-specialty crops, livestock, dairy, wool, specialty crops, eggs, aquaculture and nursery crops and cut flowers.
According to https://www.farmers.gov/cfap, CFAP provides vital financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a 5%-or-greater price decline or who had losses due to market supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19 and face additional significant market costs. Many of the fruits and vegetables, including tomatoes, watermelons and strawberries are covered under CFAP and were in production, especially in Florida, when the coronavirus struck in mid-March.
Just a couple of weeks ago, Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced additional commodities would be covered under CFAP and the deadline to apply was extended to Sept. 11. It was also announced that producers with approved applications will receive their final payment.
Customers seeking one-on-one support with the CFAP application process can call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer general assistance. This is a recommended first step before a producer engages the team at the Farmer Service Agency (FSA) county office at their local USDA Service Center.